It’s not over yet! IWLA urges members to contact his/her senators and representatives immediately to prevent the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) from imposing unnecessary and harmful changes to the existing “overtime rule.”
Currently, employers are required to pay overtime for all employees who make $23,660 or less per year. The new rule, proposed by DOL’s Wage and Hour Division, would raise the salary threshold and require employers to pay overtime for all employees who make $50,440 or less per year. With the implementation of this rule, nearly 5 million employees would suddenly become eligible for overtime pay. This 113 percent increase in the salary threshold would place a large burden on business owners and their workers, and is a major departure from previous DOL policy.
We need to continue to apply pressure on leaders in Washington to stop the DOL from progressing these overtime changes. A change of this magnitude is likely to have unintended consequences regarding how an employer compensates its employees which would negatively affect workers. Many small businesses, which often operate on thin margins, yet still pay competitive salaries, simply cannot afford to increase their workers’ salaries to the new salary threshold that has been proposed. Thus, to remain economically viable and keep the prices of their goods and services competitive, these businesses would be forced to take actions such as reducing workers’ hours or shifting salaried workers to hourly status, which many workers would consider a demotion and may also mean a reduction in benefits.
Despite DOL’s aim to expand overtime protections to help more workers, it is clear that this proposed rule, as drafted, will only stand to hurt American workers and the businesses that employ them.
As considerations of this misguided proposed rule move forward, it’s critical that you reach out to your members of Congress immediately and demand that they weigh in with DOL in opposition to this rule. The end game is to use the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to pass a congressional veto of the rule. If DOL issues a final rule after June 1, a resolution would not need to be voted on until after the next president is inaugurated.